I was on Breakfast TV this morning and this is what I made:
The original pork and beans, this is traditional dish of france, and one of my favourites from the bistro. Don’t get to hung up on having all the right ingredients, think beans and meat, try to get a good balance of flavours. Beans absorb flavours and can taste flat if you are not paying attention. Taste for salt and pepper, acidity and sweetness, and make sure their is enough moisture to keep the cassoulet from being heavy.
For the Beans:
1 cup dry white beans, I like the texture of Great Northern Beans, but you can use navy beans or white kidney beans.
4 bay leaves
1 sprig fresh thyme
1 diced onion
1.Soak beans overnight.
2. drain and rinse beans, place in large heavy pot with lots of water. Add seasonings.
3.bring to a boil, then simmer until beans are tender but not mushy.
4. drain off any excess liquid.
5. or you can cheat and use canned beans, but you compromise both flavour and texture.
1 onion, diced
1 clove garlic, chopped
4 slices of bacon, cut into 1 inch pieces
4 -2inch pieces of cooked pork belly. Feel free to substiute pork shoulder, hock, ham...
4 lamb sausages. feel free to substitute whatever sausage you like. Garlic sausage works.
4 legs duck confit.
2 cups cooked white beans
1 tomato, diced
2 cups chicken stock
salt and pepper
¼ cup bread crumbs
1 tbsp garlic butter
- in heavy dutch oven sautee bacon. Add garlic and onions. sautee until onions are golden.
- Add sausage, and brown on both sides. Add the rest of the meat. (I usually cook the duck leg separately to get that nice crispy skin)
- Add beans, tomato, chicken stock. Bring to a boil. Check for seasoning.
- combine breadcrumbs with garlic butter and cover the beans. Bake at 325 for 45 minutes.
Braised Beef Short Ribs
1 tbsp vegetable oil
12 meaty, english cut shortribs
1 large onion julienned
1 bottle of dark beer
2 cups chicken or beef stock
salt and pepper
- Season short ribs with salt and pepper. In a heavy skillet, brown shortribs on all sides. Do this in batches, if you try to brown they won’t brown well. Transfer browned shortibs to a casserole dish or dutch oven. A slow cooker works as well.
- After removing all the ribs add onions to the pan, lightly brown. Add beer to onions to deglaze the pan. Bring to a boil and reduce. Add stock and bring to a boil.
- pour onion and stock mixture over short ribs. Cover ribs with tin foil, leave one corner uncovered to allow the steam to escape and reduce the sauce. Bake in a 275F oven for 6 hours (or in a slow cooker).
- Let short ribs cool in the liquid. When the ribs are cold, you can remove the fat.
- Reheat ribs in liquid, check seasoning for salt and pepper. Serve with mashed potatoes and your favourite veggie.